The impact of the USMCA trade deal has been difficult to measure given the multiple economic disruptions that have occurred since it went into effect in 2020, but the deal remains a vital enforcement tool for the auto industry and beyond, according to a policy expert.
Kellie Meiman Hock, managing partner at international trade consultancy McLarty Associates, said Thursday that the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, which replaced the North American Free Trade Agreement, has been effective in its early days at resolving some labour issues.
"USMCA is of a more enhanced importance right now from a trade perspective because it's one of the few functioning dispute mechanisms that's left," Meiman told an audience at the Automotive News Congress in Washington. "You can't go to the World Trade Organization right now because their dispute settlement system is not fully functioning. It puts a bit of a spotlight on us as North America and what we can continue to achieve."